MP urges legal action against 2nd deputy speaker over breach of law

Mahad Salad says second deputy speaker Mahad Awad violated the House Standing Orders and the Constitution in blocking debate on 2018 Budget report

Lower House deputy speaker Mahad Awad usurped the powers of Parliament and violated the House Standing Orders and the Constitution, Mahad Salad (MP) has said calling for legal action and apology to the House.

In a letter to the Speaker Mohamed Mursal, Salad outlines what he termed as violations by the deputy speaker during the November 24 debate of the 2018 Budget report. In dismissing the report and its debate Saturday, Awad said the manner in which the motion was filed breached the House Standing Orders and further accused the Committee of failing to include reference material for the report.

But in his address to the Speaker Wednesday, Salad has dismissed Awad’s assertions noting all procedures were followed in filing the report for debate. First, Salad says, Article 26 (1,2,3) provides that the motions must be filed within 48 hours prior to the debate and that any amends can be adopted in the event 10 MPs petition the Speaker. In the case of the budget report, Salad says, there was no objection.

In his objection also, the deputy speaker said the Report was not presented to the House Business Committee which comprises of the Speaker, deputies and select members. The Committee is in charge of setting and overseeing the calendar and business of the House for each session.

NOT MET

But Salad said the House Business Committee had not met for the four weeks. Even so, Salad said, there was no request from any lawmaker to suspend or halt debate of the report. “As you see, the deputy speakers has arrogated to himself the powers of the House of the People  of the Federal Parliament in violation of the Standing Orders of the House of the People and the mandate of the Federal Parliament,” Salad said.

Salad, who is also a member of the Finance and Budget Committee stated members did not get any chance to respond to Finance Minister’s defence noting the Standing Orders dictated that the Speaker must note comments and give MPs chance to respond to a minister’s presentation.

“After the Finance Minister and Deputy of the Central Bank completed their presentations, the deputy speaker refused MPs to make any contributions. He also read from a pre-written document which the House had nothing to do with.”

Noting that House has the mandate to audit and oversee public expenditure in all public bodies, Salad said it was unfortunate the second deputy speaker violated the laws bestowing such mandate to the House.

“Therefore,” Salad told Speaker Mursal, “We urge you to take legal action, apologise for the poor performance of the second deputy speaker of the House of the People of the Federal Parliament to the members of the House of the People of the Federal Parliament and to address the accountability and up-to-date work of the members of the House of the People of the Federal Parliament.”

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